Only two weeks ago, the All Progressives Congress (APC) was bragging about how its election win was a “winner takes all” affair. It said sharing anything with the PDP amounts to betrayal because the main opposition party has been rejected by Nigerians.
Now the party is adopting a softer tone, saying that it is not opposed to its members in the National Assembly consulting with members of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) with regards to the leadership of the 9th Assembly.
Speaking via its spokesman, Lanre Issa-Onilu, the APC said consultations are normal in a democracy and expected of its members.
- Party members lobbying members of the opposition are not in violation of the party’s constitution, the APC statement said.
- “It is important to note that one of the key considerations for adopting Lawan as the party’s candidate for the Senate Presidency is his ability to carry everyone along.”
- The party however has confidence that Lawan won’t “compromise the progressive ideology of APC, so clearly, Sen. Ahmed Lawan is capable of conducting his negotiations within the prism of APC’s objectives.”
What’s going on?
- It is unclear if the party is now becoming more diplomatic because it believes Senator Ali Ndume, another APC candidate for the senate presidency, is gaining on Senator Ahmed Lawan, the party’s preferred candidate for the position.
- Ndume had bragged that he had over 30 senators on his side. If that is true, then he could cause an upset if PDP senators back him.
- The APC currently has almost 70 senators, but if over 30 of them have defected to Ndume’s camp, then a PDP bloc vote could present a similar challenge to what the party faced in 2015 when current senate president Bukola Saraki caused an upset.